May 26, 2004

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Civil rights and education leaders who gathered here to mark the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka presented sobering evidence that its promises of educational equality have not been met.
Sitting in a wing chair inside his modest brick house—an American flag fluttering out front—T.C. Pinckney explains why he is petitioning the Southern Baptist Convention to urge Christian parents to remove their children from public schools.
Since terrorists from Arab countries attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001, the U.S. government has been desperately seeking to hire Arabic speakers. But even now, more than 2½ years later, the nation has only a small pool of students who are seriously studying the language.
Wisconsin’s attorney general has added new steam to discussions of how the federal No Child Left Behind Act might be derailed by states unhappily tied to the law’s dictates. Includes the story "Top State Lawyer's Analysis."
After a very public courting by several large school systems, Rudolph F. Crew signed a contract last week to head the Miami-Dade County schools, a deal that will make him one of the highest-paid superintendents in the country.
Departments
  • Oklahoma District Settles Lawsuit Over Head Scarf
  • Georgia District Hopes to End Segregated Community Proms
  • Senator Moving to Withhold Money for D.C. Schools
  • Wis. District Given Reprieve on Songs Copied Onto Prom CDs
  • Complaint Alleges Md. District Biased Against Black Students
  • Former Mich. School Official Pleads Guilty to Racketeering
  • Texas Teachers Are Suspended for Showing Video of Beheading
With eight world leaders gathering on Sea Island, Ga., early next month for the G-8 economic summit, educators in the coastal counties of the state have had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to teach about different cultures and the United States’ role in international affairs.
A high school teacher in Zephyr Cove, Nev., has accused his principal of altering school records in order meet a provision of the No Child Left Behind Act.
Departments
Findings in a new report reveal relaxation techniques led to marked decreases in blood pressure levels for students who took part in a study.
Pennsylvania officials were expected this week to unveil the designs for new reports on student and school test performance that are customized to meet the needs of parents, teachers, and school leaders, as well as provide a direct link to instruction.
New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont have agreed to produce joint reading and mathematics tests in grades 3-8 to meet the assessment requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
The first administration of the new SAT is nearly a year away, but it is already causing sweaty palms among the college-bound set and a fresh round of conflict between one test-preparation company and the exam’s owner. Includes a table, "Sharpen Those No. 2 Pencils."
The SAT: Reasoning Test will be administered for the first time in March 2005, aimed at the high school class of 2006. The most significant change is the addition of a writing section, which will test students’ ability to write the first draft of a reasoned argument on the essay topic. The new PSAT, the preliminary test that students take as practice for the college-entrance exam, will be administered for the first time this October.
  • Federal Analysis Concludes Vaccines, Autism Not Linked
  • Junk Food Sales
  • Snack Sales
A recent federal report tracked the use of snack bars and vending machines in the nation's schools.
The 50th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka drew President Bush and Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts to separate appearances last week in the city where the case originated.
The St. John the Baptist Parish public school district in Louisiana has instituted a system to "color code" teaching positions to track the transfer of teachers from one school to another.
On a date chosen for its symbolism, veteran voucher litigator Clint Bolick last week announced the launch of two national organizations that will press for more publicly financed programs that help parents pay for private schooling.
At least four different types of studies need to be conducted on a mathematics curriculum before it can be deemed effective, asserts a report released last week by the National Research Council.
How to oversee and evaluate charter schools is relatively new territory for the hundreds of school boards, universities, nonprofit groups, and other organizations that now have the responsibility for authorizing such schools.
Departments
  • School-to-Work Efforts Fall Short, Report Says
  • Budget Cuts
  • Behavioral Medications
  • Copyright Violations
Few U.S. public schools teach Arabic. Of those known to do so, many are in Michigan, which has a large Arab-American population.
Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich’s push to gain more control over the Illinois education bureaucracy is meeting resistance from one of the state’s most powerful lawmakers, who has pitched a reform proposal of his own.
Texas leaders are united in wanting to scrap the state’s "Robin Hood" school finance scheme—they just can’t agree on what will replace it.
Departments
  • Kansas Supreme Court Issues Stay in Aid Ruling
  • Colo. Coalition Urges Action on Closing Achievement Gaps
  • Wyoming Construction Case is Sent Back to Lower Court
  • Special Ed. Gaps and Gains Identified in New York State
  • Another Democrat to Lead California State School Board
  • Indiana Governor Names Early-Learning Commission
Cheri Pierson Yecke has lost her job as Minnesota’s education commissioner.
The federal budget plan that emerged from House-Senate negotiations last week assumes billion-dollar spending increases for the two biggest K-12 programs next year, just as President Bush requested.
President Bush wants to use the National Assessment of Educational Progress to compare the reading and math skills of 12th graders in every state, but the same cannot be said of state testing officials.
Departments
New guidelines released by the Department of Education outline what states must do to comply with the requirements on standards and testing under the No Child Left Behind Act.
A lawsuit by a college wrestling coaches’ group aimed at restoring athletic opportunities for male students has been pinned to the mat by a federal appeals court.
  • Treasury Tax Credits to Aid Charter Schools
  • House Panel Reauthorizes Assistive-Technology Program
Today's new teachers need different kinds of career opportunities and support structures—and a team of researchers can prove it. Includes a table, "Supporting Teachers."
Teaching the complex history of the civil rights movement is an active, not a passive, process, says Jenice L. View.
The voices of education reform neglect the majority of schools, parents, teachers, and students, writes retired high school teacher Patrick Mattimore.
Letters
Departments
Efforts to modify the No Child Left Behind Act should go beyond mere "edge-softening," writes W. James Popham, emeritus professor of education at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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